HUNTERSVILLE, NC – Darin Mock pretty much had two races in one at the Mid Ohio Sports Club Course in his TA2 Class Trans Am event this past weekend.
When qualifying ended on Saturday, Mock placed the No. 51 AAN Adjusters
Ford Mustang for Mike Cope Racing 18th on Sunday’s starting grid. When
the initial green flag flew, Mock set sail for turn 1 and found the brakes
weren’t quite grabbing the way they needed.
As a result, the rookie driver had to soft pedal his way around the tricky
road course and fell back through the running order. By the halfway point
of the 40-lap race, a pit stop allowed his team to make a brake adjustment
rendering the problem obsolete.
From there, Mock worked his way back up through the field passing as many cars that had already passed him, and more, to earn the hard- fought, 13th-place finish.
He could have earned even a better finish if the race hadn’t been called early because of several repeated mishaps by other drivers.
“That was quite the race, for sure,” Mock said. “I was very pleased with the car in practice and wanted a better start from qualifying. But, I knew was had a pretty good AAN Adjusters No. 51 Ford Mustang for the race.
“When I went to turn 1 on that first lap, it wasn’t a good feeling. I don’t have a lot of experience racing this car, but I have enough to know I needed to take care of it until we hit pit road.
“Once we did, the team took care of it right away and then we were good to go. I gave it my all getting back up through the field to finish 13th after falling back in the running order early.”
As stated before, TA2 Class officials cut the race early because of so many incidents towards the end. Erring on the side of caution and safety was the proper call.
However, Mock wishes the race would have been able to run its course to the scheduled end.
“I really enjoyed racing my way back up through the field once my brakes
were good to go,” he said. “I seriously feel we had a top-10 car and thought we could match or better our finish from last year of 10th place.
“But, the officials did what they had to do for all our sakes and I
understand. I would like to congratulate my Mike Cope Racing teammate,
Thomas Merrill, on his second victory this year. I’m very happy for him.
Up next for Mock and team is Road America in Wisconsin as part of the
NASCAR double header Fourth of July weekend. It will be Mock’s first race there.
The Road America race in Wisconsin is this upcoming weekend.